Monday, February 4, 2008

Editorial: Why Harry Forbes, USCCB Film Reviewer, Must be Replaced

Cross-post from The World...IMHO

I couldn't agree more with this editorial.
The Bishops need to show these two the door if they want real Catholic reviews.

Harry Forbes, and his assistant John Mulderig, should be replaced as the film reviewers for the USCCB. But let's be clear: they should be replaced not because they are bad men, or "not Catholic" or "not Catholic enough"; they should be replaced because they are not doing their job. No they aren't. It is a disgrace that they gave good reviews to Golden Compass and Brokeback Mountain.

Film-reviewing, like any form of art-reviewing, is a tricky business. Everybody disagrees about art, and this is especially true of films. What one person loves, another person hates; and no matter how much two people argue about the matter, opinions on particular films rarely change. This stubbornness and disparity of opinion becomes only more pronounced when it comes to the matter of whether a film is moral or not. Where one person finds putrid and revolting moral corruption, another may find an elevating and inspiring moral lesson. Hence, we should be cautious about making premature and absolute judgments about the moral goodness or badness of films.

But there must be limits. There are some things that simply cannot be accepted by a civilized society, and certainly not by a Catholic; and, when encountered, one must not be afraid to condemn them. This is especially true when one is the official film reviewer for the Catholic Conference of Bishops, when one's very job is to be a moral compass for millions of Americans. Then it is one's duty to err on the side of safety, without, of course, falling into a stifling Puritanism.

story here

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